Recovering Win3.1 Data

Chuck Guzis cclist at
Tue Jan 13 16:56:39 CST 2015

On 01/13/2015 12:32 PM, Douglas Taylor wrote:
> In the mid-90's I had a Packard Bell computer that ran Windows for
> workgroups 3.11.  The computer is long gone, but I saved the disk. It is
> a 420 MB Conner.  I recently tried to recover the data by attaching it
> to one of those IDE/SATA to USB devices and read it under Windows7,
> didn't work.
> I am able to copy files to floppy, but the stuff I want to save won't
> fit on a floppy.
> I put the disk in an old PC and it will boot to DOS, it tries to start
> WIN3.1 but exits because of some missing sound card hardware.
> What is the path of least resistance here?  Is linux any help?

Got another DOS machine?  Boot both from floppy; use Laplink or 
Interlink to transfer your files.

You could also try a comms package to transfer data via serial cable 
(e.g. try Procomm).

If the original machine boots, there are many possibilities.  I once did 
a linkup with a system with NO serial or parallel ports (and an utterly 
incompatible with anything floppy setup) by bit banging an LED on the 
console and picking the bits up with a phototransistor connected to some 
parallel port pins.


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